Jojo is a ten-year old boy living in Hitler’s Germany and embraces Nazi thinking so much his imaginary friend is Adolf Hitler. Then he finds a jewish girl hiding in his mother’s attic and he has to decide for himself what to do about it.
This is a film that is both happy and depressing, sad and delightful, which feels like they shouldn’t play well together because they usually don’t but the melding of tones works well here because the silliness and the sadness are kept seperate. In a way it’s like the opposite tone of Joker this time going from the lighter to the heavier instead of the other way around.
Everything is great in this movie, but I have to especially applaud the acting. Sam Rockwell playing a German army colonel who lost an eye so he’s limited to teaching youths and only wants to be on the front lines again. Scarlett Johansson as Jojo’s mother who on the surface is just another good Nazi but goes to great lengths to hide a young girl in her own house. Or Roman Griffin Davis in his first appearance as the titular Jojo, I don’t think I’ve seen child acting quite as good as this in quite a while. Taika Waititi as an over the top and hilarious Adolf Hitler who’s also a boys best friend. And Thomasin McKenzie as the scared Jewish girl who builds a relationship with a Nazi boy at the end of the war in Germany. They’re all great in this film and because of them, the messages of this film are given the chance to shine through.
10+: A perfect film that can make you laugh just as hard as it can make you cry